Joy and I have landed in Kovalam and are enjoying our house nestled up in the jungle (there is a quarry near our house where I go swimming each evening!) It is now less than two weeks before the Mysore Intensive begins. I have been using the days off of to help Joy on her upcoming film, resting, practicing, and of course writing and talking about Yoga.
Last week Joy asked me the question about the difference between receptivity and effort in the practice? (This turned into the second video posted below.) However, the next morning while we were on a walk she asked me about how the role of breath plays into receptivity (first video posted)…so the discussion continued!
I decided to post both videos. If you only have time to watch one then I recommend the first video posted but if you want more information and to go deeper into the conversation then I recommend you watch both.
I hope you get some useful info out of these videos. Over the past 20 years of teaching I have realized that receptivity is one of the hardest aspects of the practice to teach but once a student understands and starts to truly work with the idea through their breath the students practice will completely change.
Notes on the concept of receptivity (it could also be thought of as simply receiving).
The deepest person within each of us knows the larger, more comprehensive nature of things beyond the limited appearance of things that the ego and senses apprehend. Learning to identify ourselves with this greater perspective is the subject of receptivity. When we use our ego and senses to become aware in an inward direction, we will find that there is a sort of knowing that has its own direction, its own intelligence, its own necessity to fulfill something through us. And so in a practical, on-the-mat way, receptivity is the sustained effort to give up control enough to receive the wisdom that lies within our inmost core. And then to follow the direction of this wisdom with as much trust as we put in our ego and our ideas and feelings of how we control or shape our lives through our choices.